Pests come in all shapes and sizes, with the common trait amongst all of them being the capacity and likelihood of doing some form of damage. Plant lice, or aphids, are small insects, ranging in color depending on your region. Aphid colors are green to yellow, red, or black. Identified by their pear shaped, soft bodies- Aphids suck the sap from the leaves and the stems of plants. These small insects also produce drops of honeydew, which is a sticky sugary substance loved by ants. Large numbers of Aphids can cause irreparable damage to plants. The honeydew can stain anything it drips on and causes additional damage to plant life by attracting ants. When plant life begins to show signs of early leaf drop, or uncharacteristic color changes- it is important to quickly inspect for the source of the issue, to best stop any further damage.
Aphids have the potential to infest any plant, but are commonly found on ornamental grasses, hibiscus and gardenias, as well as many types of annuals. Typically an Aphid colony can be located visually, somewhere within the plant itself.
The first line of defense against an Aphid infestation is to thoroughly spray effected areas with water, using a fixture with strong water pressure. Aphids can be treated with spray and granule insecticides, as well as with green pest control products. Because Aphids feed on plant life, they can also be eliminated by using systemic insecticides that function by traveling through the host plant and being ingested by the target pest. Systemic insecticides do not harm the plant host, and are quite efficient in eliminating pests like Aphids.